Clinton — At Her Best — Backs Obama « The Washington Independent
Denver–And here she was. As I wrote yesterday, the challenge for Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton tonight was far greater than to deliver a speech in support of a man she so bitterly fought during the Democratic Primary season. Clinton had been asked to do more than her duty, be more than a good soldier. She’d been asked to tell the millions of people who made up the coalition that helped her level Sen. Barack Obama in sates like California and Ohio, Pennsylvania and Texas to come together for a man so many of them held ill feelings for. She’d been asked to put her party above her pride and heal a party still wounded and weary as it enters the general election. She’d been asked to do the damn-near impossible.
At apporximately 8:41 mountain time, it was her time. Her moment. Following video presentation that was part biography and part music video with clips from “Saturday Night Live” and an introduction by her daughter Chelsea, Clinton basked in the screams that filled the Pepsi Center that seemed to go on forever.
My God, one thought watching from the filing center, could she have done any better? Beginning with her opening remarks when she urged her fellow Dermocrats to “unite as a single party with a single purpose,” she not only had the room but she had the party.
“We are on the same team and none of us can afford to sit on the sidelines,” Clinton said. “This is a fight for the future and its a fight we must win together.”
It was Clinton at her best, a speech that in many ways eclipsed her remarks at Washington’s National Building museum where she chose to eloquently end her campaign. Reflecting on her campaign and her “sisterhood of traveling pant suits” and declaring “No way, no how, no McCain ” Clinton moved seamlessly to a message devoid of her own ego and crystalized the issues Obama stands for and can win with: universal health care. An end to the war in Iraq. The creation of new jobs at home and a return to our moral standing in the world. When she made her remarks that it was appropriate that Sen. John McCain and George W. Bush would be together in the Twin Cities next week because these days “they’re awfully hard to tell apart,” even hardened journalists found themselves breaking out in laughter.
At the very end she was alone on a stage where she expected to give a much different speech on a different night. If Obama is considered a rock star by the media, tonight Clinton matched his power and energy as she looked out onto an audience she once believed would be nominating her as the Democratic nominee for President of the United States. And with that she was gone, having done her duty with honor and grace.